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Thread: Shutdown System Policy Question

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
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    Shutdown System Policy Question

    Hi,

    I've recently updated to version 9.10 and now whenever I attempt to shut the system down, I get an error similar to the following:

    "System policy prevents shutting down the system while multiple users are logged in"

    I am then prompted to enter my administrator password before I can shut the system down. I am just looking for a way to prevent this and force shut down everytime without the prompt.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    New York
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    Xubuntu 12.10 Quantal Quetzal

    Re: Shutdown System Policy Question

    "top -b -n 1|tail -n +8|awk '{print $2}'|sort|uniq"
    Will tell you what users are logged in. Do you see a "real user" other than the user you're trying to shut down the computer as. Maybe user with a home directory is a good definition of "real user".

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
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    16

    Re: Shutdown System Policy Question

    It's not a matter of knowing which users are logged in, so much as ordinary users cannot shut down the computer without knowing the administrators password.

    My girlfriend has a standard user account on my machine, and it's taken me a long time to get her to use it rather than my own account. With 9.04 this dialogue box asking for an administrative password to shut down started to show up. It had a way to store this authentication, however, so I could set it up once, and my girlfriend didn't have to think about it.

    With 9.10 there's no way to store the authentication. She can't shut down the computer while I'm logged in. If I've gone to work, left the computer on doing something, and she's changed to her account, then she can't shut down the computer.

    The question is: Is there a way to either disable this authentication check, or at least go back to being able to store the authentication?

    Cheers.

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Xubuntu 12.10 Quantal Quetzal

    Re: Shutdown System Policy Question

    You can maybe add that user to a sudoers group that can run the shutdown command without a password. But then she may have to run "sudo shutdown" from the terminal. Granted you could make a shutdown button and put it on the panel that executed sudo shutdown.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
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    16

    Re: Shutdown System Policy Question

    She's not particularly computer savvy, so the idea of going into terminal scares her. I could set up something like that, but I deliberately left her out of he sudoer's group, as
    1. she'd have no reason to do any administrative tasks,
    2. her password is considerably weaker than my own, and
    3. I don't want her to be able to accidentally mess up a config somewhere.

    I'm trying to find a way to make this less obtrusive without severely affecting my system security.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    New York
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    Xubuntu 12.10 Quantal Quetzal

    Re: Shutdown System Policy Question

    I think (not sure), that you can edit the sudoers file to give her permission to run only the shutdown command, without a password. With a button on the panel this would
    1) allow her to shutdown
    2) not require terminal
    3) not require password
    4) not give her ability to screw up system files

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
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    16

    Re: Shutdown System Policy Question

    OK, I'll look into it more thorougly, and post, if I figure it out.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
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    2

    Re: Shutdown System Policy Question

    I tried messing with group settings, etc. But, the easiest workaround I have found for now is to just execute 'sudo shutdown -h now'. That may require me to enter the password, but it's good enough since I expect it in that situation. I'm just trying to avoid the dialog mainly since I don't expect that after pressing shutdown.

    Thanks
    Last edited by flash243; November 17th, 2009 at 12:45 AM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
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    1,024
    Distro
    Ubuntu Development Release

    Re: Shutdown System Policy Question

    Seems like it should be the display manager and policies related to it that should determine who can shut down the computer using the GUI, it has root level access after all.

    My system at work shuts down normally and my system at home gives the message indicated at the beginning of the thread.

    I am using KDM at work and GDM at home.

    I'll try purging GDM and re-installing tonight or tomorrow to see if that makes a difference.

    Later, Seeker

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
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    13,505
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    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Re: Shutdown System Policy Question

    Quote Originally Posted by bobthecheese View Post
    .........
    With 9.10 there's no way to store the authentication. She can't shut down the computer while I'm logged in. If I've gone to work, left the computer on doing something, and she's changed to her account, then she can't shut down the computer.

    The question is: Is there a way to either disable this authentication check, or at least go back to being able to store the authentication?
    See if you can add an entry into the Keyring Manager: Applications-Accessories-Passwords and Encryption Keys
    Regards, David.
    Please use the Forum search and Wiki search for immediate help
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